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08
Oct
Laozi002

The Great Eastern Philosophers: Lao Tzu

Little is truly known about the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu (sometimes also known as Laozi or Lao Tze), who is a guiding figure in Daoism (also translated as Taoism), a still popular spiritual practice. He is said to have been a record keeper in...
Posted by The Philosophers' Mail
03
Sep
rachelcarson2

The Great Environmentalists: Rachel Carson

There’s nothing very natural about caring for nature. The first and predominant impulse of humans has almost always been to burn the trees, exhaust the fish stocks, pollute the ground springs and darken the skies. If we learn – gradually – to become somewhat...
Posted by The Philosophers' Mail
20
Aug
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Travel as Therapy: Monument Valley, USA - for Calm

You are - quite literally - in the middle of nowhere - and, unexpectedly, it’s helping. A lot. How frantic we otherwise normally are. We live competitive crazed lives: we compare ourselves constantly to those who have more, are smarter, seem more organised, look younger...  There...
Posted by The Philosophers' Mail
14
Aug
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The Great Philosophers 13: John Ruskin

John Ruskin (1819-1900) was one of the most ambitious and impassioned English social reformers of the 19th century. He was also - at first sight - a deeply improbable reformer, because he seemed to care mostly about one thing - beauty - which has...
Posted by The Philosophers' Mail
27
May
rexclouds

Clouds, trees, streams

No one, probably, has ever much doubted that these things are nice. Clouds, trees and streams represent nature in its most gentle, tranquil guise. Their appeal is instinctive. But we take them for granted. They form a pleasant background to other things: out of...
Posted by The Philosophers' Mail
12
May
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Why you should stop taking pictures on your phone – and learn to draw

Whenever something looks interesting or beautiful, there’s a natural impulse to want to capture and preserve it – which means, in this day and age, that we’re likely to reach for our phones to take a picture. Though this would seem to be an...
Posted by The Philosophers' Mail
26
Mar
Caspar

Wondering About Wonder

Early in the morning one day in spring I had one of those small but extraordinary experiences that is hard to forget. I came downstairs with my young daughter to find a brilliant pool of light on our kitchen ceiling. At first we just couldn't...
Posted by Caspar Henderson
17
Mar
Nature

How to Connect with Nature

‘The obvious is usually profoundly significant.’ (Edward O. Wilson) What does it mean to feel a connection with nature? It means gaining an insight into the most important network there ever has been and ever will be. It means becoming aware of our relationship with...
Posted by Tristan Gooley
13
Jan
Tennis Ball

How to Think More About Exercise

Meet Chad. Chad is a personal trainer, from the Coen brothers’ film Burn After Reading. He is a fictional character, but we recognize him immediately: muscular, handsome, full of energy and positive thinking – and as dumb as a sack of small stones. In fact,...
Posted by Damon Young
29
Nov
Simply Seeing 690 x 358

Simply seeing

We are fooled by a scientific education if we believe that the accumulation knowledge brings us ever closer to the world around us. It is not knowledge that counts, when we are talking about direct and immediate human experience, it is method. “There is a...
Posted by Dr Hugo Whately
08
Nov
Perceptions Experiments 691x2

Quick Guide to Sensory Experiments at Home

Picture yourself enjoying a meal outside an auberge in the Provençal countryside. The fields of lavender roll off into the distance. French voices murmur around you. You’re served a beautiful chilled Rosé in a rustic earthenware carafe. You ask what it is. The owner...
Posted by Russell Jones

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